Iraq's Al-Abadi: We Will Not Abide by United States sanctions against Iran

Iran Iraq Trump sanctions

Iran Iraq Trump sanctions

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al Abadi's support for renewed USA sanctions on Iran has placed his outgoing government in a hard position and highlighted his fragile relationship with Tehran.

In July 2017, the two countries signed an agreement to promote interaction and share experiences in the fight against terrorism and extremism, work together to ensure border security, and provide each other with training and logistical, technical and military support.

Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Ghasemi told the semi-official ISNA news agency that he did not have any knowledge of Abadi's reported visit to Iran.

On Tuesday, the US had re-imposed the first round of economic sanctions on Iran, which mainly target the country's banking sector.

Under the 2015 deal, the United States agreed to lift the crippling economic sanctions on Iran in exchange for a halt to Iran's controversial nuclear program and the access of worldwide inspectors to relevant facilities. Mr Trump withdrew from that pact in May. "Blockade and sanctions destroy societies and do not weaken regimes", he said at a news conference on Tuesday.

According to a senior Iraqi official this was in direct response to Mr al-Abadi's earlier suggestion that Iraq would obey United States sanctions.

Donald Trump Iran sanctions
“Can I the Prime Minister of Iraq endanger the interests of Iraq just to make a stand

Amid the ongoing US-Iran dispute, Abadi was set to visit Iran to discuss economic relations.

"He is not Iran's candidate of choice, this further isolates him from Tehran".

He said a powerful country such as the United States had no right to impose sanctions on other countries.

"A red line for Iran will always be that they can not have an Iraqi government in power that is anti-Iranian", he added.

"We don't sympathize with the sanctions, we don't think they are appropriate and we don't interact with them, but we are committed to protect our people".

Iraq buys goods worth 6.6 billion AMD annually from Iran.

Iran supreme leader admits 'mistake' allowing nuke deal negotiations
The Trump administration has said Iran can avoid the sanctions if it accepts tougher restrictions on its nuclear program. Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif negotiated the deal with counterparts from six powers, including then U.S.

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